RCN Wales believes the decision made by Bangor University to reduce the number of Learning Disability lecturing staff at its School of Health Sciences department will have a devastating effect on Learning Disability (LD) students and patient care across North Wales.
Helen Whyley, Director said: “We are bitterly disappointed that the University has decided to make these cuts to the LD lecturing team. How will Bangor University be able to encourage LD nursing students to apply for places at the University, without enough learning disability nurse lecturers providing the proper level of academic support.
This reduction in lecturing staff is also particularly unhelpful, given that the Welsh Government has made quality of life for people with learning disabilities a priority, and increased pre-registration student places for learning disability nursing.
It takes a significant amount of time to produce a lecturer who can undertake world class research and also educate nursing students. Bangor University has an excellent LD team and reducing this team will only produce negative consequences for the LD nursing workforce. This will also effect the communities of North Wales, which will suffer for many years to come”.
In addition to the above, there is also the prospect of down-grading the remaining staff within the LD nursing lecturer team. This will only further de-skill, de-motivate and disenfranchise LD services within Bangor University. It also sends out a message of devaluing the LD academic staff within the education institution of the University.
People with learning disabilities should be supported to live and thrive in their communities locally. RCN Wales requests that Bangor University reconsider its decision and support LD nursing across North Wales.